- ACTIVIST IN grim protest outside Murdoch’s London HQ
- ACCUSES THE media baron of ‘muting’ climate science
- ACTION FOLLOWS XR protest at Murdoch-owned printworks
- NEWS MAGNATE HAS been slammed for climate stance by his own son – and former employees
- MURDOCH ADMITS to ‘climate change skepticism’
A VICAR SEWED up his own lips yesterday in a bloody and graphic demonstration against Rupert Murdoch’s ‘silence’ on climate change.
Rev Tim Hewes stood in mute vigil for two hours outside Murdoch’s News Corp London HQ after he was videoed sewing his lips together.
The 71-year-old held placards bearing the words: ‘Murdoch muted climate science’ and ‘Murdoch to the dock for ecocide’.
He said the media tycoon’s legacy would be the ‘6th mass extinction on planet earth’ and called for his media empire to be brought to trial for its role in ‘destruction of life on our planet’.
Rev Hewes – a retired dentist – released a video on YouTube explaining the demo, organised by Christian Climate Action.
Speaking ahead of his protest, Rev Hewes said: ‘I’ll be sewing up my lips to demonstrate the terrible and violent havoc Murdoch’s actions have wreaked upon the world and to symbolically make visible this truth.
‘Murdoch muted climate science as certainly as if he’d sewn up its lips himself.’
In the clip – lasting almost three minutes – Rev Hewes is seen performing his grim ritual with visibly shaking hands, before dabbing his blooded lips with a tissue.
In a stirring voiceover, he accuses Murdoch of suppressing climate change evidence, discrediting activists and ‘pulling the strings’ of governments worldwide.
Says Rev Hewes: ‘Murdoch has been a climate change liar, dissembler and delayer for decades.
‘He’s suppressed a wealth of evidence-based, peer-reviewed scientific observation from thousands of pre-eminent scientists across the globe.
‘He has ridiculed and attempted to discredit the warnings of highly-regarded humanitarian agencies and eminent ambassadors and activists for the planet.
‘He has supported politicians who in exchange for the immense power of the Murdoch media have been willing to pander to his personal disowning of the developing human causes of climate catastrophe.
‘Rupert Murdoch holds the strings. He’s the puppeteer of governments across the world.’
Rev Hewes was joined in his protest by colleague and fellow activist Rev Mark Coleman, who delivered a letter to News Corp HQ asking Times environment editor Ben Webster to meet and discuss the issue.
But protestors were told Webster was not in the building, and News Corp refused to engage with them.
Rev Hewes is far from the only concerned environmentalist to slate Murdoch’s stance on climate change.
In September last year, Extinction Rebellion activists blockaded Murdoch-owned newspaper printworks Newsprinters in protest.
And in January 2020 his own son James Murdoch joined forces with wife Kathryn to accuse News Corp and Fox News of climate denial as horrific wildfires raged in Australia.
‘They are particularly disappointed with the ongoing denial among the news outlets in Australia given obvious evidence to the contrary,’ a spokesperson for the couple – who are known to champion green causes – told the Daily Beast.
Days before the public rebuke, News Corp Australia employee Emily Townsend emailed management expressing disgust at the group’s ‘dangerous’ and ‘irresponsible’ coverage of the bushfire crisis.
‘I find it unconscionable to continue working for this company, knowing I am contributing to the spread of climate change denial and lies,’ she wrote to executive chairman Michael Miller.
The Black Summer bushfires killed 26 people and over three billion animals, as well as torching over 24 million hectares of land and destroying more than 3,000 homes.
James Murdoch went on to resign from News Corp’s board a year ago citing disagreements over editorial content.
His father has publicly dismissed accusations of climate change denialism, but tweeted himself in 2015 that he was a ‘climate change skeptic not denier’.
Rev Hewes, who removed his stitches at the conclusion of his protest, said: ‘Rupert Murdoch will go down as one of the most, if not the most, destructive men in the history of the world and his legacy will be the 6th mass extinction on planet earth.
‘Murdoch and NewsUK should be brought to trial for their role in the destruction of life on our planet – if not in a court of law, then in the eyes of the world.’
Greg Miskiw, who worked at the News of the World for over 20 years before the paper was closed down by Murdoch for phone hacking in 2011, said: ‘I used to think Murdoch was a creator, in as much as he launched newspapers, invested in editorial and sustained well-paid jobs for journalists.
‘However, when I saw him on TV talking about climate change and denying it in response to questions about the Australian bush fires, I realised that he was wrong and he was saying these things out of self-interest.
‘He said he was happy with what Australia was doing in control of the environment issues. At the time Australia was the second largest exporter of fossil fuels in the world, bring an income of 65 billion Australian dollars per annum.’